It was a night mixed with hip-hop, punk rock and bad dancing (on my part) during the Boys of Zummer tour headlined by rapper Wiz Khalifa and rock band Fall Out Boy in Hershey, Pa., on Saturday, July 3.
The Giant Center was packed and ready as Wiz took the stage to open the show with “Ass Drop” off his recent album, “Blacc Hollywood.”
With the stage lit up in yellow, Wiz rapped his well-known hit, “Black and Yellow,” which had fans moving to the beat.
“Let’s have some fun,” Wiz said before running off stage. As the crowd started to cheer, Wiz could be seen running out onto a mini stage, giving the people in the seats a chance to see him up close.
Like a small tidal wave, fans in the pit ran toward Wiz as he began his performance of “Taylor Gang.”
In true Wiz fashion, during his hit song “Young, Wild and Free,” large inflatable joints were bounced throughout the pit as he had a real one on stage with him.
The crowd went crazy as Fall Out Boy’s bassist, Pete Wentz, ran out and joined the rapper during Wiz’s song, “Stayin Out All Night.” Wentz had a huge smile on his face as Wiz rapped alongside him, clearly enjoying the moment along with the crowd.
The lights dimmed as Wiz encored with his recent hit featuring Charlie Puth, “See You Again,” which is featured on the “Fast and Furious 7” soundtrack. The lyrics, “We’ve come along way from where we began / Oh I’ll tell you all about it when I see you again,” echoed throughout the stadium as images from the movie flashed on the big screen. It was a beautiful moment during the concert that still gives me chills.
With a short break in between, it was finally time for the reason I had driven two and a half hours out into middle-of-nowhere Pennsylvania: Fall Out Boy.
The band came out and opened with their 2005 hit “Sugar, We’ re Goin’ Down.” Lead singer Patrick Stump did not start out singing, but instead let the crowd belt out the lyrics.
I screamed along to the chorus and was suddenly transported to my teenage years.
Like Wiz, guitarist Joe Trohman, Stump and Wentz left the stage to sing acoustic versions of “Young Volcanoes” and “Immortals” on a smaller stage away from the pit.
Throughout their performance, Wentz stopped and took a moment to talk to the crowd, at one point giving a shout-out to the brand new mountain lion cub in Hershey Park. What stood out the most, however, were the moments when Wentz connected with the crowd and offered words of encouragement for people going through rough times.
“At some point, the storm clears for everybody and you realize you can fucking move mountains,” Wentz said, before the band played their recent hit, “Uma Thurman.”
The crowd started to cheer as large, lighted “FOB” letters came down and reminded fans of their music video for “Thnks Fr Th Mmrs.” Once again, the crowd sang along to the famous song.
Wentz gave one last speech to the crowd, touching upon how special it is to be different.
“Most of the status quo in this world kinda sucks and it’s kind of cool to be outside of that,” Wentz said. “If we weren’t considered outsiders, then we wouldn’t have ended up in this band on this stage.”
The band ended the unforgettable night with the 2003 song, “Saturday,” where Wentz made his way to the front of the crowd to hold hands with some lucky fans, a tradition of his dating back to the early years of the band.
It was an unforgettable night that had been seven years in the making for me. I left the stadium with barely a voice, sore cheeks from the never-ending smiling and memories that I will never forget.
Wentz was right when he said, “Hopefully these songs can be the bodyguards of your dreams.”